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Press Release - August 27, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - August 27, 2010
Contact: Pamela R. Green, Esq., General Counsel, (413) 636-7955

Image: Rendering of the Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum master plan for its newly-extended property.

Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum Purchases
1.5 Acre Adjacent Property in Lenox MA

Lenox, MA (August 27, 2010) -- The Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum (www.berkshirescenicrailroad.org) has taken a significant step towards expansion by purchasing the neighboring one and a half acres of property now occupied by Daley Trucking. The purchase price was $550.000. The acquisition of this parcel is part of the non-profit’s master plan, developed in 2006. “The property will give us the space needed to achieve our goal of becoming a premier railroad museum and attract more tourists to Berkshire County,” said Museum President Rick Selva.

Founded in 1984, the all-volunteer organization began operating train rides out of the Lee rail yard until the historic Lenox Station was donated to the museum in 1986. Once used as a machine shop, museum volunteers restored the building to its original appearance and listed it on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1903, Lenox Station is presently obscured from view at the corner of Housatonic and Crystal Streets by the structure currently located on the newly purchased parcel. “Our plan is to pay off the mortgage, demolish the industrial building and restore the property to its original appearance at the turn of the 20th century. Lenox Station is a beautiful piece of local architecture and it complements the scenic beauty of October Mountain and Woods Pond. We hope to work with the Town of Lenox and Commonwealth of Massachusetts to integrate the museum with the nearby recreation areas, including the planned bike path” added Selva, a volunteer since the museum’s birth in 1984.

Financing for the purchase was provided by Berkshire Bank. Legal representation for the Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum, including extensive title services, was provided pro-bono by the law firm of DeRosa Dohoney, LLP of North Adams MA. Concept design and renderings for the museum’s master plan was donated by William Caligari Interiors of Great Barrington MA.

Once the mortgage is paid in full, the museum plans to construct a restoration shop for its historic railroad equipment and an exhibit building to catalogue and display its expansive collection of railroad artifacts. The museum is currently expanding its rail yard to display a growing fleet of vintage railroad equipment.

A celebration fundraiser and train ride featuring Great Barrington’s Lakota Bar-B-Q will be held at Lenox Station on Saturday, September 25th to help raise funds to pay down the mortgage.

The museum operates 20-mile round-trip scenic train trips in 1920’s passenger cars with vintage diesel-electric locomotives on weekends and federal holidays from Memorial Day to October 31st. For more information on the Berkshire Scenic Railway Museum, including its popular Polar Express Trains and the BBQ fundraiser, visit www.berkshirescenicrailroad.org or call the museum at 413-637-2210.

Museum Contact: Pamela R. Green, Esq., General Counsel, (413) 636-7955

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